Guidance

Living in Chile - Guidance

Advice for British people living in Chile, including information on health, education, benefits, residence requirements and more.

Overview

This guide sets out essential information for British national residing or planning to reside in Chile, including advice on health, education, residence requirements and more. We are unable to provide any guidance on general lifestyle enquiries apart from the information and links listed below. See our information on Support for British Nationals abroad: A guide.

Health

Healthcare is available in Santiago de Chile, as well as in other main cities along the country, however medical care can be limited in some remote areas. You are expected to pay the Medical care in public Hospitals as well as in private Clinics, as well as your medicine and sometimes for a few other things. Public hospitals experience serious shortages of basic medicines and equipment. Private medical care is available, but can be expensive. If travelling and/or living in Chile, it is highly advisable to obtain medical insurance. Private hospitals might require payment prior to giving treatment to patients.

More information about Chile’s public health system can be found on the website of the Ministry of Health.

If you wish to have the Embassy’s Medical Panel List, please do not hesitate to request it at chile.consulate@fco.gov.uk.

Education

The Ministry of Education rules the public and private education system in Chile. There are private schools around the country, most of them located in Santiago. The education quality varies highly. There are international schools, including British schools, in the country, most of them located in Santiago, Vina del Mar and Concepcion.

Employment and recognised qualifications

British Nationals can work in Chile if authorised to work and have the appropriate permissions to do so. Please contact the Chilean Consulate in London.

If you plan to work in Chile for information on requirements and what kind of visa you need. The Chilean Immigration Office deals with Visa applications and working permits in Chile. For matters related to recognised educational qualifications, please contact the Ministry of Education .

Entry and residence requirements

British nationals are not required to obtain a Chilean visa to visit Chile as tourists for short stays up to 90 (calendar) days, but visitors must comply with immigration requirements to enter the country for longer periods of time. For information on Chilean immigration law, please contact the Chilean Consulate in London or, if you are already in Chile, please contact the Chilean Immigration Office. They will be able to provide you with advice on visas to work and reside in Chile.

Please also visit our Travel advice, which includes information on entry requirements to the country.

Driving licences and vehicles

You can drive for up to 3 months using a UK driving licence, plus your Valid passport and the tourism entry card. And up to 1 year with an International Driving Permit. Carry your passport with you at all times when driving.

For information on driving in Chile and how to obtain the relevant permissions for your vehicle or how to obtain a local driving license, please contact Chile’s Ministry of Transport.

Finance

If opening a personal bank account, you will be expected to submit many documents, it is mandatory to have a RUN (National Identity Number). Please ask the bank of your choice about requirements.

Pension Funds

Chile and the UK don’t have a bilateral agreement on Pension funds; however there are certain procedures in order to transfer the Pensions funds from Chile to the UK. Please send us an email to chile.consulate@fco.gov.uk so that we can explain you how to proceed. It is also advisable to contact your AFP, for further guidance. Or the Superintendencia de Pensiones.

For information on taxes, please visit the Servicio de Impuestos Internos.

Disclaimer

This information is provided as a general guide and is based upon information provided to the embassy by the relevant local authorities and may be subject to change at any time with little or no notice. The FCO and the British Embassy will not be liable for any inaccuracies in this information. British nationals wishing to obtain any further information must contact the relevant local authority.

Published 17 August 2015
Last updated 8 January 2018 + show all updates
  1. Website updates.
  2. First published.